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June 12, 2007
VMNH Displays Moon Rock from Apollo Mission

Press Release: Martinsville Bulletin

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

A moon rock now on display at the Virginia Museum of Natural History was collected during the December 1972 Apollo 17 mission to the moon, giving new meaning to the term "traveling exhibit."

Lunar Sample 72275, 6, will be on display until July 31.

It was collected by Astronaut Gene Cernan at the foot of the South Massif Mountain Range on the moon during the final Apollo mission.

The rock weighs 125 grams and is a fragment of the original 3,640 gram rock brought back to earth.

This sample is a breccia, a common rock type found in the Lunar Highlands. At 3.9 billion years old, this breccia sample is older than 99.99 percent of all earth surface rocks.

Scientific research is being conducted on the balance of this sample at NASA's Johnson Space Center and at other research centers around the world under a continuing program of investigation involving lunar samples collected during the Apollo Program.

For more information about the exhibit, call 634-4141 or e-mail information@vmnh.virginia.gov